Does Your Automatic Transmission Fluid Have To Work Harder Than A Manual Alternative?

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When engineers design automatic transmission fluid, they do so knowing that this is one of the harshest environments you can find and that the fluid will need to cope with extreme temperatures. Yet as dedicated to their work as they are, these engineers can only do so much as they craft this fluid and know that it will eventually degrade. But what can happen when this fluid breaks down, and how can you try to counter the adverse effects as a vehicle owner?

Harshest Environment

There are many more moving parts in an automatic admission than in a manual alternative. As these parts move back and forth in close proximity to each other, this can build up a great deal of heat and the fluid can only cope with a certain amount of abuse until it loses efficiency. At the same time, microscopic particles of metal will wear away from the bearings, gears, synchronisers and torque converter mechanisms, as many of these parts come into contact with each other. This byproduct of friction is inevitable, but it will also contribute to contamination at the same time as the lubricant breaks down.

Building Problems

These contamination particles will accumulate and flow through the automatic transmission casing as time passes. Filters will trap some of these contaminants, but other debris can find its way into the darkest recesses of the transmission system instead.

When Simple Replacement Is Not Enough

Clearly, the best way to deal with this challenge is to remove the old fluid and replace it with new. This should be done according to the manufacturer's recommendations, but you should also take additional steps if you want to do the best job possible. In this case, you will need to take the vehicle to a mechanic so they can attach the transmission casing to a special machine. This machine will add pressure to the equation to "suck" any transmission fluid that may remain in place following drainage. It will also send through a cleaning agent that can dissolve any stubborn particles of contamination that may have become adhered to the inside of the torque converter.

Don't Do Half A Job

If you are in the habit of changing your old automatic transmission fluid at home, remember that this is only half a job. If you really want to look after your vehicle, bearing in mind how much stress your transmission fluid has to deal with, make sure that you get your system flushed as well.